Cancer & Other Effects of Widespread Herbicide Use in the Mississippi Delta

Covering more than 4 million acres, the Mississippi Delta is one of the largest contiguous farming areas in the United States. Situated between the Mississippi and Yazoo Rivers, this floodplain’s topography is ideal for planting commercial crops, and its climate—up to 260 frost-free days annually—ensures they thrive.

Unfortunately, these are the same conditions that allow weeds to thrive, as well. As such, farmers throughout the delta rely heavily on herbicides. To ensure higher crop yields, the agrochemical company Monsanto (acquired by Bayer in 2018) teamed up with the Delta Pine and Land Company to supply farmers with seeds that were genetically modified to withstand herbicide spraying.

While such an arrangement sounds reasonable in theory, the agriculture industry’s reliance on these two conglomerates has caused problems over the years. In 1998, for example, Monsanto was forced to pay settlements to several dozen farmers totaling millions of dollars after the cotton seeds they supplied failed to perform as promised. And over the past year, numerous lawsuits have been filed against Monsanto alleging that exposure to the company’s most popular herbicide, Roundup, causes cancer.

Roundup contains glyphosate, which has been deemed a probable human carcinogen by the World Health Organization. In one study, researchers found exposure to this herbicide increased the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma by 41 percent.

Naturally, those who are exposed to glyphosate day in and day out, such as farmers and landscapers, face the greatest risk; however, because of Roundup’s widespread use across the Mississippi Delta, a broad population of individuals are concerned about their past exposure including athletes and some homeowners.

Let’s examine a few of the issues that researchers suspect may be linked to the use of glyphosate-containing herbicides in the Mississippi Delta:

1. Cancer

Researchers at the WHO have established a link between glyphosate and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. While some organizations have yet to classify glyphosate as a carcinogen, many have determined that exposure to the weed killer is likely to increase the risk of cancer.

2. Gluten Intolerance

Some individuals who experience gluten intolerance after consuming products that contain wheat may actually be reacting to the effects of glyphosate. The herbicide prevents gluten from binding to different amino acids in the grain, which can make it harder to digest.

3. Fungus

Researchers in Argentina found that Roundup contributed to the growth of certain strains of fungus that commonly affect cereal grains. Known as aspergillus, one strain of this fungus produces Aflatoxin B1, a naturally occurring mycotoxin that happens to be one of the most carcinogenic substances on earth.

Call (601) 265-7766 for a Free Consultation with a Jackson Personal Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma following exposure to glyphosate, your family may be entitled to compensation for the associated damages. To determine if you have grounds for a claim, contact Coxwell & Associates.

Our attorneys have a reputation for providing honest, aggressive, and compassionate representation. Call (601) 265-7766 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free case evaluation with a personal injury lawyer in Jackson.

Disclaimer: This blog is intended as general information purposes only, and is not a substitute for legal advice. Anyone with a legal problem should consult a lawyer immediately.

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